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Story and photos by Andy ArgyrakisPretty much any time Alice Cooper hits the road, his vast army of fans come out with feverish support, but around Halloween, there's no one in greater concert demand than "The Godfather of Shock Rock." To cap off the holiday weekend, the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer packed out the versatile Venue at Horseshoe Casino just south of downtown Chicago in support of his latest live offering "Raise The Dead: Live From Wacken," which comes on the heels of a fairly steady recording career that dates back to the late 1960s.
As opposed to previous summer and future fall dates supporting Motley Crue's farewell outing, this headlining evening gave Cooper and company the proper 100 minute time frame they deserved to deliver all the key hard rock, heavy metal, glam and garage rock classics. Indeed the envelope pushing performer with the cane, crutch and straightjacket was in fine form, who even at 66, was doused in mounds of mascara as he pummeled through scorchers like "No More Mr. Nice Guy," "Billion Dollar Babies," "Welcome To My Nightmare," "I'm Eighteen" and "Poison" (plus a powerful "Raise The Dead" covers segment that chronicled The Beatles, The Doors, Jimi Hendrix and The Who).
Though Cooper's vast work unquestionably stands the test of time (rubbing off on Marilyn Manson, Rob Zombie, Nine Inch Nails and many more), much of his live appeal continues to be the costumes and characters. Naturally, the guillotine, boa constrictor, deranged baby dolls, fake blood and a super-sized Frankenstein appeared in their gory glory, falling somewhere between a beloved haunted house and horror movie. And yet by the time the entire ghastly cast growled their way through "School's Out" (enhanced by the chorus of Pink Floyd's "Another Brick In The Wall"), it was evident that no matter the season, Alice Cooper simply never goes out of style.
Upcoming shows at The Venue at Horseshoe Casino include The Band Perry on Sunday, November 16; Styx on Friday, December 5; Slayer with Suicidal Tendencies and Exodus on Saturday, December 6; Christmas with Aaron Neville on Friday, December 12 and The Whispers' 50th Anniversary on Saturday, December 27. For additional details, visit www.thevenuechicago.com and www.ticketmaster.com.
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